Seaman remembered in Harwich

THE THOUSANDS of brave merchant seamen who have lost their lives at sea were remembered during a civic service to mark Merchant Navy Day.The Harwich and District Merchant Navy Association marched in full uniform through Harwich to St Nicholas church for a service attended by the town's dignitaries yesterday .

THE THOUSANDS of brave merchant seamen who have lost their lives at sea were remembered during a civic service to mark Merchant Navy Day.

The Harwich and District Merchant Navy Association marched in full uniform through Harwich to St Nicholas church for a service attended by the town's dignitaries yesterday .

This year's service marked the 60th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic as well as Merchant Navy Day, which was established by the current Government and falls on September 3, the day World War II broke out.

The Lord Lieutenant of Essex, Lord Petre, took the salute as the parade marched past the Guildhall.


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The Merchant Navy were like the fourth service during the war, plying across the oceans carrying cargoes of food, raw materials, ammunition and troops.

Thousands of merchant seamen lost their lives as their boats were blown up by torpedoes, German U-boats and mines.

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But for part of the war survivors of blown-up ships were penalised as their wages were stopped as soon as the ships were lost and did not resume until they started work on another ship.

After the war while the Armed Forces were remembered with memorials and parades, the Merchant Navy were the forgotten heroes.

Now the Harwich and District Merchant Navy Association is raising money for a memorial to be built in Harwich, where it will be seen from the sea, to commemorate merchant seamen.

The East Anglian Daily Times has joined with the Harwich group to help raise funds for the Forgotten Heroes Appeal. The memorial should be built in time for the Harwich Charter 400 celebrations next year.

The memorial is in the planning stages and so far about £13,000 has been raised to build it.

Recenty the Harwich group raised £462 in a street collection and £55 from a curry night.

Secretary Kate Wilson said: "We are very grateful to the people of Harwich for their generosity and their support for the local Merchant Navy Association."

To make a donation to the appeal please send a cheque to the East Anglian Daily Times, Forgotten Heroes Appeal, Fairfax House, Causton Road, Colchester, CO1 1RJ, or donations can be paid in direct at the HSBC bank in North Station Road, Colchester, account name Forgotten Heroes, sort code 401851, account number 01236660.

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